Caterham Launches Opening 2012 F1 Challenger In Magazine

LONDON, England- In a modern and newly economical mode, the Caterham squad became the first team to launch their 2012 Formula One challenger by showing their car, the CTO1, in F1 Racing Magazine Thursday.

Originally, the team which was named Lotus F1 last season and headed by Tony Hernandes, had some of the photos shown one day before, which gave many ideas of what the car was going to look like. But technical director Mike Gascoyne, in his second year with the team, is not interested in what the car looks like, but what how it can improve on their results from last season.

“Aerodynamics is always the main focus of performance and improvement,” said Gascoyne. “Last year it was all about the blown diffuser, which we struggled with because not having it in 2010 meant we were always playing catch up throughout the 2011 season in comparison to other teams.

“The fact it’s banned this year certainly plays to our advantage. Other teams had so much more development time, they were able to get much more out of it than we were ever able to, so that eliminates a little of the competition in terms of technical development. But really, aerodynamics is always one of the main features of development and that’s why we’ve put so much additional resource into it.”

Last year, the team did not install the now famous KERS boost system in their vehicle, and in addition suffered much because of it. But this season sees a whole new situation, which now does includes the device, in addition to some technical assistance from Red Bull, and for the second year in a row, help from Renault as an engine supplier.

Gascoyne also stated that there were new rules changing the focus on a newly built front nose; something that the Englishman feels should be adopted and copied since the team was the first to launch their race car.

“Well the regulations have changed to limit the height of the nose box to try to ensure that noses don’t get too high.” Continued Gascoyne. “Our challenge is that you always want to get the chassis as high as possible to allow clean air flow to the underside of the car, and what you see on the CT01 is our solution to that. As we’re the first car out it is obviously stirring up a lot of debate, but because of the 2012 regulations I think you’ll probably be seeing this type of nose on most of the cars this year.”

As far as the team is concerned, Finnish ace Heikki Kovalainen remains with the team as one of the drivers, but as this story went to press, it is still questionable whether Italian veteran Jarno Trulli will continue. But Hernandes nevertheless believes that either way, the team should make a huge stride in its attempt to achieve its one goal-to move up to the midfield.

“Target wise, I have been quoted as saying I want us to score a point this year and that really has to be the aim. It has to be,” Fernandes responded. “Towards the end of last year we were so close to the midfield cars, but our lack of KERS limited our capabilities.

“This year, however, with the people and facilities we have in the factory and the wind tunnel, and with KERS, I am confident that we will become a danger to many of the midfield teams, and yes, I want us to achieve a point somewhere in 2012 – maybe two if we are very lucky!”

Personally I love this car, and it’s very flattering that people want to talk about our car and our team, but the main consideration is that it is quick. As long as it is quicker than last year’s car I don’t think the looks matter, and I am sure that when all the other cars are unveiled we will see a pretty common thread running through all of them. I actually think it’s beautiful. It’s different, and different does not equal ugly – in fact I think its difference is what makes it beautiful, but then I am probably a bit biased.”

With major assistance from more than one source, the Caterham team can do nothing more than improve for this upcoming year.

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